AOC slams antisemitism on left, says when Jews threatened progressives are undermined

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US bureau chief

US Democratic Representative from New York Alexandria Ocasio Cortez speaks during a press conference to call for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in front of the US Capitol in Washington, DC, on November 13, 2023. (Mandel Ngan/AFP)
US Democratic Representative from New York Alexandria Ocasio Cortez speaks during a press conference to call for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in front of the US Capitol in Washington, DC, on November 13, 2023. (Mandel Ngan/AFP)

Squad Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls out antisemitism in her own political camp, saying it is “an assault on our values as Americans and especially as progressives.”

“When the Jewish community is threatened, the progressive movement is undermined,” Ocasio-Cortez says during a webinar with Jewish Council for Public Affairs CEO Amy Spitalnick and former Anti-Defamation League staffer Stacy Burdett.

Ocasio-Cortez asserts that charges of antisemitism have sometimes been weaponized to silence progressive critics of Israel, particularly women of color.

“Criticism of the Israeli government is not inherently antisemitic and criticism of Zionism is not automatically antisemitic. That being true does not mean that we should not recognize criticism and when that criticism crosses a line into real harms against our Jewish community,” Ocasio-Cortez adds, in a rare event bringing together leaders from legacy Jewish American organizations with one of the most prominent progressive lawmakers in Congress.

“When it comes to the current conflict: it is possible to recognize Jewish pain, fear and grief in this moment. It does not take away from our grief and pain for families in Gaza,” she asserts.

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